Coffee chats seem to be replacing first interviews especially for individuals who are interested the company, rather than a specific role.
What is a coffee chat?
A coffee meeting rather than an informal interview can allow you the opportunity to ask questions about future job roles, information about the company, and even career advice and all in a less formal setting.
For a recruiter, it gives the opportunity to meet with a potential employee to determine if there could be a role for the person at the company if they could fit the companies culture and environment.
For the candidate, it is a way for them to learn more about a business without a formal interview and to decide whether they can picture themselves being happy in that organisation.
Should you prepare?
It is essential that you prepare for your coffee meeting to ensure you are using it to your advantage. Think about your goals and be ready to talk about yourself and what you’re looking for in your career, as well as what you know already about the company. Use your recruitment consultant to your advantage – they can provide you with dedicated advice and guidance before your chat to ensure you are up to date with the company.
This is your time to make a great first impression.
What happens after?
It is a good idea to send a thankyou email. It’s amazing how many people forget to do this and don’t realize how important it is! Having a dedicated recruitment consultant to liaise with the client can ensure that this happens.
Know who you are going to be meeting and what they look like. Linked in is great for this!
Have goals of what you want to get out of this meeting – coffee chats can go off on tangents so having a plan ensures you stick to what you really want to know.
Focus on the interview – public places are noisy and have distractions so chose somewhere suitable.
Would I recommend coffee chats?
Especially for individuals who are unsure about moving but want to see what is out there in the industry. It is also a great way for recruitment agencies to propose a meeting with an excellent candidate who may not tick every box on the job description, or who wants to transfer their skills into a different role. Do many people allocate enough time for casual meet ups? Probably not, but they should!
It can lead you to many other opportunities that may be exactly what you are looking for. ?